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Pets’ lives changed, too

OSPCA responded quickly after storm

WOODBRIDGE and MAPLE – The lives of many Vaughanians — human and animal — were changed forever by last week’s tornado.

The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was on scene the morning after the storm to help care for pets evacuated from their damaged homes.

“We brought down bowls, food for animals, temporary caging, because the fear was that people were running out of their houses with their animals in hand and may not have anywhere to care for them while they’re temporarily out of their homes,” said Alison Cross, OSPCA spokesperson. “We brought those resources with us so that we could hand them out right then and there.”

Surprisingly and fortunately, she said, not many animals were brought to OSPCA staff for care.

“We think that the community really reached out to their neighbours and were able to house a lot of the animals for their neighbours,” Cross said. “(Inspector Scott Silvia) said to me that it was really kind of remarkable that we didn’t see as many animals in the shelters as we thought.

“He did see one woman who was holding her bunny rabbit and now she obviously found somewhere to put the animal and cage it,” she added. “It seemed that everybody just kind of opened their doors and said, ‘Come on in’.”

The OSPCA is available to help anyone that needs assistance with a pet as the cleanup continues, Cross said. The York Region branch can be reached at 905-898-7122 ext. 306.

“If you need some food, if you need some temporary caging, a carrying cage, something like that, . . . contact the Ontario SPCA and we’ll get you in touch with someone that can provide you that,” she said. “We really are here to make things a lot easier on you during that situation.”

Vaughan Today
In print: August 28, 2009, page 3
Online: August 31, 2009 [link]